Presentation on theme: "Fire Hazards of Oxygen Enriched Atmospheres"— Presentation transcript:
1Fire Hazards of Oxygen Enriched Atmospheres TP N° 12/05Fire Hazards of Oxygen Enriched AtmospheresEUROPEAN INDUSTRIAL GASES ASSOCIATION AISBLAVENUE DES ARTS 3 – 5 s B-1210 BRUSSELSPHONE s FAX s : EIGA EIGA grants permission to reproduce this publication provided the Association is acknowledged as the source
2DISCLAIMERAll technical publications of EIGA or under EIGA’s name, including Codes of practice, Safety procedures and any other technical information contained in such publications were obtained from sources believed to be reliable and are based on technical information and experience currently available from members of EIGA and others at the date of their issuance.While EIGA recommends reference to or use of its publications by its members, such reference to or use of EIGA’s publications by its members or third parties are purely voluntary and not binding. Therefore, EIGA or its members make no guarantee of the results and assume no liability or responsibility in connection with the reference to or use of information or suggestions contained in EIGA’s publications.EIGA has no control whatsoever as regards, performance or non performance, misinterpretation, proper or improper use of any information or suggestions contained in EIGA’s publications by any person or entity (including EIGA members) and EIGA expressly disclaims any liability in connection thereto.EIGA’s publications are subject to periodic review and users are cautioned to obtain the latest edition.EUROPEAN INDUSTRIAL GASES ASSOCIATION AISBLAVENUE DES ARTS 3 – 5 s B-1210 BRUSSELSPHONE s FAX s :
3Properties of oxygen Oxygen supports life Oxygen is essential to lifeIts normal concentration in the air we breathe is approximately 21 %We can breathe in a 50-60% oxygen enriched atmosphere for several hours under medical care (oxygen therapy)But it is dangerous to do so without knowing the associated risks due to oxygen enrichment !
4Properties of oxygen Oxygen supports combustion It is not flammable but supports combustion.Most materials burn fiercely sometimes explosively in oxygen !As the oxygen concentration in air increases, the potential fire risk increases.At concentrations above 23 % in air, the situation becomes dangerous due to the increased fire hazard.This van caught fire very quickly, due to the driver smoking in an oxygen enriched atmosphere.
5Properties of oxygen Oxygen gives no warning Oxygen is colourless, odourless and tastelessOxygen enrichment cannot be detected by the human senses !
6Properties of oxygen Oxygen is heavier than air Being heavier than air, oxygen can accumulate in low lying areas !such as pits or underground rooms,especially in cases of liquid spillage.
7Necessary conditions for a fire For a fire or explosion to occur, three elements are required:Combustible material,Oxygen and anIgnition sourceCombustibleMaterialIgnition sourceOxygenWhen one of the 3 elements is missing,a fire cannot occur!
9Leaking equipment is very dangerous Leaks lead to an oxygen enrichment hazardLeaking connections, flanges, fittings are hazardous.Insufficient ventilation increases the riskLeak test all equipment after assembly or maintenance
10Liquid Oxygen SpillA spill of liquid oxygen creates a dense cloud of oxygen enriched air as it evaporates.The clothing of personnel entering the cloud will become enriched with oxygen.When liquid oxygen impregnates the soil which contains organic material, e.g. wood, asphalt, etc., a dangerous situation exists, as the organic material is liable to explode when impacted.
12Compatibility of materials Only certain materials are suitable for use in oxygen serviceMost materials - including metals - will burn in oxygen enriched atmospheresEquipment and material contaminated with oil or grease can ignite easily and burn with explosive violence in oxygen enriched atmospheres
13Never use oil or grease to lubricate oxygen equipment! Equipment must be cleaned for oxygen serviceusing approved cleaning agents/methodsCheck that any material/part or substance you intend to use is approved for oxygen service.
15Causes of oxygen firesImpact with combustible material impregnated with oxygenImproper use of oxygenIncorrect operation and maintenance of oxygen systemsUse of materials non compatible with oxygen serviceThis oxygen trailer was damaged and persons were killed after oxygen impregnated asphalt exploded.The ignition was caused by the impact of a hook on the road.
16Do not use oxygen for applications for which it is not intended! Do not use oxygen as a substitute for air:Powering pneumatic toolsInflating tyresStarting diesel enginesDusting benches, machinery or clothing
17No flame in oxygen enriched atmospheres DO NOT SMOKE or use naked flames!Oxygen enriched atmosphere can occur at:Pits, trenches,Low enclosed areasUnderground sewersIn air separation units, cylinder filling plants,…Around tanker fillingAround vents, leaks…
18No hot work before checking atmosphere If hot work (welding, flame cutting, soldering, grinding, etc.) has to be carried out, ensure that:the atmosphere has been checked and confirmed as safeDon’t start work without a Work Permit
19If exposed to an oxygen enriched atmosphere Ventilate your clothing in the open air for at least 15 minutes before smoking or going near a source of ignition.
20Oxygen Enriched Atmospheres Fire Hazards ofOxygen Enriched AtmospheresWork safely !It is your life!